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Annette Bening Says She’s ‘Very, Very Proud’ Of Transgender Son Stephen Ira

Annette Bening Warren Beatty INSET Stephen Ira Beatty
Source: Stephen Ira/Instagram; Shutterstock

Nov. 27 2019, Published 11:29 a.m. ET

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Annette Bening is fully supportive of her eldest son, Stephen Ira, and extremely proud of how he’s handled his transition.

During a talk with AARP, the 20th Century Women actress spoke about Stephen — who was born Kathlyn Elizabeth — and his process, which began at age 14, when he realized he was transgender.

“He’s managed something that’s very challenging with great style and great intelligence,” Annette, 61, said of her son. “He’s an articulate, thoughtful person, and I’m very, very proud of him,”

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Annette’s husband of 27 years, Warren Beatty, feels the same way about Stephen, 27, and even told Vanity Fair in 2016: “He’s a revolutionary, a genius, and my hero, as are all my children.”

The actors are also parents to son Benjamin, 25, and daughters Isabel, 22, and Ella, 19, who recently left the nest to attend Juilliard.

“When I was younger, part of me thought I could save my children from having to suffer, which was, of course, ridiculous,” Annette — now an empty-nester with Warren — said in the interview. “They have to go through their struggles. They’re very much their own people now.”

Warren Beatty

As has learned, Stephen has been very outspoken about transgender issues in the past. He is the co-founder of Vetch: A Magazine of Trans Poetry and Poetics, and in his Twitter bio, he describes himself as a “transexual writer.”

In 2015 he famously spoke out about the suicide death of 17-year-old Ohio transgender teen Leelah Alcorn, who took her life after her parents pulled her out of school upon learning she identified as a girl.

“Give this young woman the peace in death that she deserves and work for what she wanted, work for the things she needed while she lived,” Stephen tweeted., “IF YOU CAN’T HANDLE HAVING A TRANS KID, DON’T HAVE KIDS.”



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